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  1. #1
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    Sep 2003

    Question about types of tweeters in speakers

    I was wondering of the mid to topline speakers such as BW, Dynaudio, Energy,Vandersteen, etc. Which of these use tweeters that aren't metallic? I am not sure if I am asking the proper question here but I hear alot of people saying they don't like tweeters that are metal based because they tend to sound very "tinny and metallic" I was wondering if this is because of the type of materials used in the speakers and if so, does the silk type tweeters produce a more pleasing sound? I know the planar type speakers are noted for this. I heard some PSB speakers and thought the tweeter sounded very tinny in nature.

  2. #2
    Forum Regular filecat13's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Los Angeles, CA

    Cool Tweeter mania

    I think it's better if you don't know a thing about a particular speaker's driver material or design before you audition it. Once the salesman/friend/expert/reviewer tells you "Metals sound tinny; silks sound sibilant; papers sound buzzy; plastics sound whirry" you're doomed to hear whatever characteristics you've been told to expect.

    In double blind tests, I could tell which speakers I liked the most, but I couldn't tell what the individual transducers were made of. Neither could anyone else in the test, though some people insisted beforehand that they could. Afterward they blamed poor testing conditions, poor source material, inferior amps, etc., for their inability to correctly identify anything. A few simply, honestly admitted they had been biased and arrogant, and now they knew better.

    The clear winner in the reproduction of highs was a metal: Titanium to be exact, a dome in a rubber surround. Out of ten people, nine selected it. Four of those nine insisted it was a different type of driver when they selected it, and wouldn't believe it until shown otherwise.

    The silk came in third (out of 11), behind the titanium dome and a beryllium compression driver in a horn.

    This was only one test, set up locally. YMMV. You need to do your own listning, and no, I'm not going to identify the speakers other than to say they ranged in price from $2800 to $8000 a pair.

  3. #3
    Suspended topspeed's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2003

    Here! Here!

    Or should it be "Hear, Hear?"

    Filecat nailed it.

    Who freakin' cares what tweeters are made of? The poll here (which I refuse to participate in) as to which tweeter you like best is mundane at best...and I'm being nice. If all you listen to is the tweeter, then you can't see the forest for the trees.

    Look, go listen to a bunch of speakers without prejudice and just buy what sounds best to you for your application. My main system uses metal dome, my bedroom silk dome, and my office has a ellipse semi-horn loaded soft dome. I bought each and every SPEAKER because of the overall sound and integration of the drivers for their application.
    I've heard just as many people complain that B&W's Nautilus tweeter is forward and aggressive as I've heard remark that they are laid-back. No joke. To label all metal domes as tinny and/or all soft domes as laid-back is generalizing in the worst way. That's like saying all Ferrari's are fast (they're not). It's all b.s. anyway because we all hear different things based on our experience, attitude, and expectations.

    Just buy what you like. It's your money after all.

    Good luck.

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